Trains to southern states from Mumbai will move faster now that one of the sections in Solapur division of Central Railway (CR) has been successfully electrified. The railway authorities completed the electrification work on the 51km-long Dudhani-Hotgi section. In fact the CR authorities also conducted speed trials for 120 kmph.
The electrification work is vital to boost speed of trains, faster movement of long distance and goods trains, headway between two trains and savings in fuel cost as diesel locomotives need not be used for running trains. According to CR officials this partial electrification will help in faster movement of some trains to southern states of Karnataka, Andhra Pradesh, Tamil Nadu, Telangana and Kerala; going via Solapur division.
On June 22, the Union Railway Minister Piyush Goyal also tweeted, “Electrification & speed trial of Dudhani – Hotgi section in Solapur, Maharashtra has been successfully completed at 120 kmph. The electrification drive by Indian Railways enables: Enhanced Speed, Better Connectivity, Reduced Carbon Emissions”.
The work of electrification on this 51.22 route kilometres covers 127.47 track kilometres between these two railway stations. On June 19, the Commissioner of Railway Safety (CRS) also inspected this section for the rail electrification work carried out there. Senior railway officials said that after successful speed trials were conducted; authorisation was issued after which a Goods train was hauled with electric traction on this section the same day.
“Work on Hotgi-Solapur section is underway,” said a CR official. Sources said that there are issues especially to provide relief, rehabilitation and remuneration against land to farmers and local people on this section that is around 40 kilometres long.
The Indian Railways network is expected to witness 100 percent electrification of rail on broad gauge routes by December 2023. The broad gauge route kilometres electrified is expected to reach 46,000 RKM or 72 percent by the end of 2021 from 41,548 RKM as on October 2020.